Low altitude place to stay in Switzerland

Low altitude place to stay in Switzerland

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Tamival
Tamival
35 posts
active member
Apr 3, 2018 - 10:46 AM

Hello all,

Due to some recent health issues, we may need to alter two of our travel days in order to possibly avoid a higher altitude excursion. After visiting Luzern for two nights and Montreux for two nights, we had planned to stay in Wengen two nights and visit Jungfrau. However, we may look to another area for these two days in a lower altitude, before heading on to Basel to visit my nephew. Would you think Bern May be a decent option, or any other area if looking for something with interest outside of a mountain top? We could extend our stay in Montreux.

Thanks...

Chantal
Chantal
944 posts
top member
Apr 3, 2018 - 1:44 PM in reply to Tamival

Hi Tamival,

Bern is a nice city but personally I would extend my stay in Montreux or look at places like Thun or Murten.

Arno
Arno
11150 posts
expert &
moderator
Apr 3, 2018 - 7:25 PM

What's the maximum altitude you can go to Tamival?

I recently learned that Locarno and Ascona are the lowest towns in Switzerland, with their lake promenade at just below 200 m. Not suggesting that you go there, just a fun fact.

Tamival
Tamival
35 posts
active member
Apr 3, 2018 - 8:33 PM in reply to Arno

Well, we are trying to avoid issues with altitude and thinner air as a contributor to breathing issues and dehydration. There isn’t really a set number but I’m concerned heading to an area like “Jungfrau” that could bring on problems.

Arno
Arno
11150 posts
expert &
moderator
Apr 4, 2018 - 5:43 AM

Ok, I see. If I recall correctly you will arrive by plane, right? If the lower air pressure in the plane is allowed you're probably ok to go up to 2000 m or so: www.who.int/ith/mode_o f_travel/cab/en/. You should consult your doctor though, as this is just an educated guess. But if this is correct you are probably best off spending the nights down in the valley/on the plains, while you can still do day trips for a few hours to average altitudes to enjoy the views. If you would go up to the town of Beatenberg, at 1100 m, the views will already be very different from down at Lake Thun. Even a cable car trip to the Niederhorn at 1950 m may not be an issue. And the views will be rewarding if the sky is clear.

Just trying to make sure you can still enjoy some of the better views :-)

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
5006 posts
expert
Apr 4, 2018 - 6:25 AM in reply to Arno

Hi Arno-

one of the forum members has posted information similar to your comments about airline "altitudes."

Here are some data from a quick search of the internet:

<<"Although aircraft cabins are pressurized, cabin air pressure at cruising altitude is lower than air pressure at sea level. At typical cruising altitudes in the range 11 000–12 200 m (36 000–40 000 feet), air pressure in the cabin is equivalent to the outside air pressure at 1800–2400 m (6000–8000 feet) above sea level.

Cabin air pressure - World Health Organization>>"

and

Wiki-

<<" On commercial aircraft, the cabin altitude must be maintained at 8,000 ft or less. Pressurization of the cargo hold is also required to prevent damage to pressure-sensitive goods that might leak, expand, burst or be crushed on re-pressurization. The principal physiological problems are listed below.

Hypoxia

The lower partial pressure of oxygen at altitude reduces the alveolar oxygen tension in the lungs and subsequently in the brain, leading to sluggish thinking, dimmed vision, loss of consciousness, and ultimately death. In some individuals, particularly those with heart or lung disease, symptoms may begin as low as 5,000 feet (1,500 m), although most passengers can tolerate altitudes of 8,000 feet (2,400 m) without ill effect. At this altitude, there is about 25% less oxygen than there is at sea level.[2]">>

5,000 feet is 1524 meters. 8,000 feet is approximately 2438 meters. Although an airline could set a lower "cabin altitude" it would cost them money, so they are unlikely to do it. And, I certainly get dehydrated when I fly across the Atlantic Ocean for 6 to 10 hours. I have also read that, for comfort, "cabin altitude" can be set to higher pressure (lower altitude) in the newer planes with stronger fuselages such as Boeing 787, but I don't know any details.

Of course, one way to avoid dehydration is to drink a lot of water. ;-) Works for me. I do notice the effects of hypoxia described above, however, and more so as I get older. It is probably part of "jet lag" but I notice even on flights that may only involve a couple of time zones.

Slowpoke

Last modified on Apr 4, 2018 - 7:57 AM by Slowpoke
Tamival
Tamival
35 posts
active member
Apr 4, 2018 - 12:12 PM

Great information. We will definitely double check with the doctor. We had planned to do one of the Luzern area mountains (Titlis, Pilatus, Rigi) but will make that call while there. Hydration is definitely a big deal!

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
5006 posts
expert
Apr 4, 2018 - 1:12 PM in reply to Tamival

Hi Tamival-

We all have our own opinions about which city is worth visiting.

In fact, I enjoy Bern more than Montreux.

www.myswissalps.com/mo ntreux

One of the special attractions of Montreux is the Rochers-de-Naye. At 2042 meters, it might be within your tolerance zone.

www.myswissalps.com/ro chersdenaye

map.geo.admin.ch/?topic=ech&lang=en&bgLa yer=ch.swisstopo.pixel karte-farbe&layers=ch.bav.ha ltestellen-oev,ch.swisstopo.swiss tlm3d-wanderwege&layers_visi bility=false,false&E=2 564442.50&N=1142378.38 &zoom=10

That link is from the SwissTopo map:

map.geo.admin.ch/

which certainly has more detail than most people want or need. But,it gives you altitudes.

The lake side promenade and Chateau de Chillon are also quite nice.

And, I was about to say that there is no "Old Town" in Montreux, but decided I'd better check. There actually is:

www.myswitzerland.com/ en-us/old-town-of-montreux.html

en.wikivoyage.org/wiki /Montreux.

Up on a hill.

I've been to Montreux four or five times, with one 3 day stay for

a business meeting. We had our meeting at a lake side hotel,

and meals at lakeside in the summer were very pleasant. There are nice

places along the lakeside promenade where you can have a nice meal

wih a nice view.

Good French food.

So, I thought about why Montreux does not appeal to me.

I concluded it is that:

1.- I am comfortable with the German language, but not with French.

2.- It is too hilly for walking in any direction except parallel to the lake shore. Less so in the past; more so as my knees have gotten arthritic with age. I really like to wander a city.

3,- I get my lake experience on Lake Lucerne, which I know well. It is adifferent kind of lake, and appeals more to me.

Why do I like Bern, even if it is not on a lake ?

www.myswissalps.com/be rn

1- The city of Bern, although definitely not completely level, has a large and quite attractive Altstadt - Old Town. The arcaded streets, with shops and restaurants, are nice to wander through. A fair amount is level. You can walk through and moderately down hill to the Nydegg Bridge, overlooking the bear pits. Or, you can ride the #12 tram, which makes a couple of stops along the way.

2.- The Rosegarden is always a nice target for a walk. The views are nice from there, although it does require a short steep walk up a street and paved path to get there. You can also get to it by tram with a stop on the side away from the river and old town, but I recall you have to make at least one change. Of course, there is a restaurant up there.

www.bern.com/en/detail /the-rose-garden

www.myswitzerland.com/ en-us/rose-garden.html

3.- There are a couple of restaurants at the Nydegg Bridge which I enjoy. One - The Old Tram Depot- for reliable Swiss German food and beer, with a pleasant view of the city, and an excellent, tiny, and hard to get into (because it is always full) Brasserie across the street from the Old Tram Depot. It has an eclectic and sophisticated menu.

www.altestramdepot.ch/ en/home

brasseriebaerengraben. ch/

Snowman- a member of this forum - likes the Tram Depot, and is quite familiar with the city, if you want more recommendations.. Since he lives in Geneva,he has a both perspectives to consider.

4. - I tend to stop by Bern for a half day when I am within easy reach. Since I spend a lot of time in regions within easy reach of Bern by train, that is a significant factor. Montreux is a longer ride for me. I have to plan to be there, rather than deciding on the last minute on a rainy day.

Either choice could be nice, depending on your personal preferences.

Slowpoke

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Tamival
Tamival
35 posts
active member
Apr 5, 2018 - 1:03 AM

Thank you all for taking the time to respond. I look forward to researching some options and we will make some decisions in the next week or so. Our trip begins April 18, so it’s crunch time! We are really anticipating a great adventure!

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